For five generations, National Geographic magazine has dazzled and educated people with its photographs, illustrations, and gripping stories from the four corners of the earth. Combining travel, wildlife, science, history, culture, and conservation, the National Geographic Society’s magazine has inspired millions to explore and take an interest in the planet. Now, in celebration of its 125th anniversary, National Geographic has given Taschen access to its archives to distil the huge collection into three volumes of photographs, totalling 1,500 pages – and with only 125,000 copies produced worldwide.
The trans-continental trip includes the Americas and Antarctica (Volume 1); Europe and Africa (Volume 2); and Asia and Oceania (Volume 3). From evocative early black-and-white pictures to autochromes, from the golden age of Kodachromes to digital, with groundbreaking underwater and wildlife photography, National Geographic practically invented the photo essay, while pushing the technical boundaries of the medium. Readers will discover how the magazine evolved from presenting a romantic view of the world – subjects posed and smiling – to edgier stories reflecting political turmoil, social issues, and environmental threats.